Name: Souris Hong-Porretta / Hustler of Culture
Location: Dogtown, Santa Monica, CA
Size: 13 x 16' (home office)
Tell us a bit about Hustler of Culture: Hustler of Culture is a blog about culture, curated consumption, and community. After shutting down the indie-game development studio I co-founded with my husband, Silvio and our friend David in 2003, I found myself with some free time and wanted to write about what was interesting to me and to share invites to cool events I received (prior to the start-up, I had worked at Tokion Magazine). A handful of my tech friends worked for Six Apart (makers of TypePad) and showed me their software.
It’s been eight years in the making and I’m stoked to work on Hustler of Culture still. I’ve met incredibly kind and creative people from all over the world via my blog and I wouldn’t ever want to lose that.
How would you describe your office? It’s a mid-century bedroom-home office with custom-tailored fixings.
This room used to be a full-time home office I shared with Silvio (a game developer), but after our daughter Lulu was born in 2009 we gave our bedroom to her and combined our home office and bedroom together.
How long have you been there? We bought our home in 2000 but moved to Manhattan later that year. We returned in December 2004. So we’ve been in this home, this round, since early 2005. This office set up has only existed since last year and we’re still working out the kinks.
In terms of layout and organization of your work space, what are specific details that you’re particularly proud of? We used to have the typical 80s L.A. bedroom with sliding glass, mirrored-doors for closets. We tore them out to build a bookshelf we designed with our architect (with lights on dimmer) and added six giant file cabinets that hide all our paperwork, nice and neat.
I love the 12 ½ foot vaulted ceilings; it’s a nice surprise for anyone who walks in the room and it keeps the space light and airy even though our bedroom-office is stuffed with toys, art, and books.
We also have a cozy balcony off the room where I tend to an orphanage of deserted plants (when friends move, we inherit their greenery). I grew up in a house with a forest; so I like to have living things surround me. It’s nice to be able to get up from my desk, walk a couple of feet, smell the jasmine and breathe in fresh ocean air.
What’s on your desk/computer desktop at this moment? Oddly enough, gifts from friends including an incredibly beautiful melon-colored orchid from Xeni of Boing Boing, a generic desk lamp from my college roommate Alexis, Marc Newson Porcelain cups from Heidi and Wayne at 101 Cookbooks, an adidas shoe signed by Stan Smith, a thank you card from Ryan McGinness, a cow from our Brazilian friends at LostArt, and two external hard drives. In short, things from friends I often write about on Hustler of Culture.
I’ve got more officey-type stuff on the wall shelves next to my desk.
On my computer desktop I have five folders for: Hustler of Culture, Tiny Iron Fists (my kids blog), Outside The Lines (my children’s book project) Gilt City (I’m also a Gilt City Editor) and Consulting (for my freelance work), and sadly, an unopened shortcut to the game, Portal.
Any tips or advice about office décor, layout or organization? I surround myself with the people and things that inspire me. Although the room has lots of books, lots of art, and lots of knick-knacks, it’s organized and has its place.
Since our home office is also our bedroom, we make a conscious effort not to mix up the two, too much. I like to be plugged in for work and completely unplugged for rest. Our walls are painted white and all our shelving is white. It helps showcase whatever we’re displaying without making us feel too crazy.
Tech & Design Resources
TOYS on shelves:
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